In November of 1969, the body of 22-year-old Penn State student Betsy Aardsma was discovered in the university's Pattee Library, after she was stabbed by an unseen perpetrator. Today that murder remains unsolved, and some believe that Betsy's spirit still walks the library's book stacks.
Image: Patriot News
According to the school's news site Onward State, a lit candle was found many years later at the murder site, along with news clippings about the incident, and the words “R.I.P. Betsy Ruth Aardsma, Jul. 11, 1947 – Nov. 28, 1969. P.S. I’m Back” scrawled on the floor. After that discovery, researchers say multiple reports of hauntings and strange phenomena have plagued the university.
The murder case is still the subject of intense investigation, much of which is being conducted by private individuals. One of those interested parties, filmmaker Tommy Davis, has completed a dramatic film based on Aardsma's life, but he's not interested in playing up the macabre or supernatural elements.
“People say they hear screams and see blood,” Davis told Onward State. “There weren’t screams during the murder and there was no visible blood.” He also dismisses the idea that the note might have been left by Betsy's killer. “The fact that at that point in time a killer would’ve gotten away with it for 25 years and risk coming back is unlikely,” he said.
Photo: Onward State
Penn State alumnus and professor Sascha Skucek, also an expert on the case, doesn't deny the possibility of ghosts, but he's skeptical as to whether Aardsma's spirit is truly lurking in the library.
“A ghost would be trapped in the library for a reason,” Skucek said. “There’s no reason for Betsy to be trapped.”
Davis's film, simply titled Betsy, will screen at Penn State on February 24th, and you can play the trailer below. There's also a detailed archive of information on the case at WhoKilledBetsy.org, based on the book of the same name.